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Publication numberUS7186457 B1
Publication typeGrant
Application numberUS 10/307,083
Publication date6 Mar 2007
Filing date27 Nov 2002
Priority date27 Nov 2002
Fee statusPaid
Publication number10307083, 307083, US 7186457 B1, US 7186457B1, US-B1-7186457, US7186457 B1, US7186457B1
InventorsBurch E. Zehner, Matthew F. Kollar, Jeffrey R. Brandt
Original AssigneeCrane Plastics Company Llc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Siding panel composite material of cellulosic filler, PVC resin and chlorinated polyethylene; durable and weatherable siding, exhibits the look and feel of natural wood, may be stained, painted, colored, and capped
US 7186457 B1
Abstract
A component such as a siding panel comprised of a PVC/wood flour composite. Another embodiment is a component such as a siding panel that is made from a PVC/CPE/wood flour composite. The cellulosic composite may be extruded through a die and then bent into the shape of the component. Optionally, a reinforcement backer (e.g., an expanded polystyrene foam panel) may be adhered to the cellulosic composite siding.
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Claims(40)
1. A siding panel made from a composite material, said composite material comprising:
cellulosic filler in an amount of about 15 to about 35% by weight of said composite material;
PVC resin in an amount of about 20 to about 70% by weight of said composite material; and
chlorinated polyethylene in an amount not exceeding about 40% by weight of said composite material.
2. The siding panel of claim 1 wherein the thickness of said siding panel is between about 0.050 and about 0.075 inch.
3. The siding panel of claim 1 wherein said cellulosic filler is at least about 40 mesh wood flour.
4. The siding panel of claim 1 wherein said cellulosic filler is in an amount of about 20 to about 30% by weight of said composite material.
5. The siding panel of claim 4 wherein said cellulosic filler is in an amount of about 25% by weight of said composite material.
6. The siding panel of claim 1 wherein said PVC resin is in an amount of about 30 to about 60% by weight of said composite material.
7. The siding panel of claim 6 wherein said PVC resin is in an amount of about 40 to about 50% by weight of said composite material.
8. The siding panel of claim 2 wherein said stabilizer is in an amount of about 1 to about 3% by weight of said composite material.
9. The siding panel of claim 2 wherein said lubricant is in an amount of about 2.5 to about 5% by weight of said composite material.
10. The siding panel of claim 2 wherein said process aid is in an amount of about 1 to about 3% by weight of said composite material.
11. The siding panel of claim 1 wherein said chlorinated polyethylene is in an amount of about 5 to about 30% by weight of said composite material.
12. The siding panel of claim 11 wherein said chlorinated polyethylene is in an amount of about 10 to about 20% by weight of said composite material.
13. The siding panel of claim 1 wherein said composite material further comprises inorganic filler in an amount up to about 15% by weight of said composite material.
14. The siding panel of claim 13 wherein said inorganic filler is in an amount of about 2 to about 10% by weight of said composite material.
15. The siding panel of claim 1 further comprising a reinforcement backer secured to said composite material.
16. The siding panel of claim 15 wherein said reinforcement backer is comprised of extruded or expanded polystyrene foam.
17. The siding panel of claim 15 wherein said reinforcement backer is secured to said composite material by an adhesive selected from the group consisting of neoprene, urethanes, and pressure sensitive hot melt adhesives.
18. A component made from a composite material, said composite material comprising:
cellulosic filler in an amount of about 20 to about 30% by weight of said composite material;
PVC resin in an amount of about 30 to about 60% by weight of said composite material;
chlorinated polyethylene in an amount of about 5 to about 30% by weight of said composite material; and
inorganic filler in an amount not exceeding about 15% by weight of said composite material.
19. The component of claim 18 wherein said PVC resin is in an amount of about 40 to about 50% by weight of said composite material.
20. The component of claim 18 wherein said chlorinated polyethylene is in an amount of about 10 to about 20% by weight of said composite material.
21. The component of claim 18 wherein said inorganic filler is in an amount of about 2 to about 10% by weight of said composite material.
22. The component of claim 18 wherein said component is selected from the group consisting of siding panels, siding accessories, interior and exterior decorative house moldings, picture frames, furniture components, deck components, deck railings, window moldings, window components, window lineals, door components, roof components, fence components, fence posts, fence rails, and floor components.
23. The component of claim 18 wherein said component is made by a process selected from the group consisting of extrusion, compression molding, and injection molding.
24. A component made from a composite material, said composite material comprising:
cellulosic filler in an amount of about 20 to about 30% by weight of said composite material; and
an alloy in an amount of about 70 to about 80% by weight of said composite material, said alloy comprising PVC and chlorinated polyethylene;
wherein said chlorinated polyethylene is in an amount of about 5 to about 30% by weight of said composite material.
25. The component of claim 24 wherein said chlorinated polyethylene is in an amount of about 10 to about 20% by weight of said composite material.
26. The component of claim 24 further comprising a reinforcement backer secured to said composite material.
27. The component of claim 24 wherein said component is selected from the group consisting of siding panels, siding accessories, interior and exterior decorative house moldings, picture frames, furniture components, deck components, deck railings, window moldings, window components, window lineals, door components, roof components, fence components, fence posts, fence rails, and floor components.
28. The component of claim 26 wherein said component is made by a process selected from the group consisting of extrusion, compression molding, and injection molding.
29. The siding panel of claim 1 wherein said composite material further comprises:
stabilizer in an amount of about 0.5 to about 4% by weight of said composite material;
lubricant in an amount of about 1 to about 8% by weight of said composite material; and
process aid in an amount of about 0.5 to about 5% by weight of said composite material.
30. The component of claim 18 wherein said composite material further comprises:
stabilizer in an amount of about 1 to about 3% by weight of said composite material;
lubricant in an amount of about 2.5 to about 5% by weight of said composite material; and
process aid in an amount of about 1 to about 3% by weight of said composite material.
31. A component made from a composite material, said composite material comprising:
cellulosic filler in an amount of about 15 to about 35% by weight of said composite material; and
an alloy in an amount of about 65 to about 85% by weight of said composite material, said alloy comprising PVC and chlorinated polyethylene;
wherein said chlorinated polyethylene is in an amount of about 5 to about 40% by weight of said composite material.
32. The component of claim 31 wherein said chlorinated polyethylene is in an amount of about 5 to about 30% by weight of said composite material.
33. The component of claim 32 wherein said chlorinated polyethylene is in an amount of about 10 to about 20% by weight of said composite material.
34. The component of claim 31 further comprising a reinforcement backer secured to said composite material.
35. The component of claim 31 wherein said component is a siding panel.
36. The component of claim 31 wherein the thickness of said component is between about 0.050 and about 0.075 inch.
37. The component of claim 31 wherein said cellulosic filler is in an amount of about 20 to about 30% by weight of said composite material.
38. The component of claim 31 wherein said PVC is in an amount of about 20 to about 70% by weight of said composite material.
39. The component of claim 38 wherein said PVC is in an amount of about 30 to about 60% by weight of said composite material.
40. The component of claim 39 wherein said PVC is in an amount of about 40 to about 50% by weight of said composite material.
Description
BACKGROUND AND SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates generally to cellulosic composites and, more particularly, to cellulosic composite components such as siding panels. The present invention will be described primarily with reference to wood flour/polyvinyl chloride (PVC) composites. For instance, the present invention includes several different formulations and material composites including, but not limited to, PVC/chlorinated polyethylene (CPE) blends that include an inorganic filler in addition to the cellulosic material.

Conventional siding products are commonly made from aluminum, vinyl, or other similar materials. However, siding products made from these materials may not provide the desired aesthetic and physical characteristics. Moreover, some housing developments may not allow the use of siding made from these materials. For instance, some housing developments may require building materials such as brick, stone, stucco, cedar, or cementious siding.

In light of the shortcomings of vinyl and aluminum siding, a need exists for an improved siding product. For instance, there is a need for durable and weatherable cellulosic composite siding that exhibits the look and feel of natural wood such that it may be utilized in these limited housing developments. In addition, there is a need for cellulosic composite siding that may be stained, painted, colored, and capped. Furthermore, there is a need for cellulosic composite siding that provides the desired characteristics of toughness and stiffness as well as improved thermal and noise insulating properties.

An exemplary embodiment of the present invention may satisfy some or all of these needs. In one exemplary embodiment of the present invention, a siding panel is comprised of a PVC/wood flour composite. Another embodiment of the present invention includes a siding panel that is made from a PVC/CPE/wood flour composite. Optionally, a reinforcement backer (e.g., an expanded polystyrene foam panel) may be adhered to the cellulosic composite siding.

As compared to natural woods, a cellulosic composite of the present invention may offer superior resistance to wear and tear. In particular, the composite may have enhanced resistance to moisture. In fact, it is well known that the retention of moisture is a primary cause of the warping, splintering, and discoloration of natural woods. Moreover, the composite may be sawed, sanded, shaped, turned, fastened, and finished in a similar manner as natural woods.

Although the cellulosic composite of the present invention may be particularly useful for making siding, it should be recognized that the cellulosic composite may also be useful for a variety of other applications. For instance, the cellulosic composite of the present invention may be useful for making siding accessories, interior and exterior decorative house moldings, picture frames, furniture components, deck components, deck railings, window moldings, window components, window lineals, door components, roof components, fence components, fence posts, fence rails, floor components, and other suitable indoor and outdoor items. In addition, the cellulosic composite may also be used to make other types of products that are commonly made from wood, synthetic wood, metal, or plastic.

In addition to the novel features and advantages mentioned above, other features and advantages of the present invention will be readily apparent from the following descriptions of the drawings and exemplary embodiments.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of a siding panel of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is another perspective view of the siding panel of FIG. 1.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF EXEMPLARY EMBODIMENT(S)

The present invention is directed to a cellulosic composite material. More particularly, the present invention is directed to a siding panel or any other suitable component manufactured from the cellulosic composite material. Nevertheless, it should be recognized that the cellulosic composite material may be used as a substitute for natural wood as well as other cellulosic-filled and inorganic-filled polymer composites. For example, the cellulosic composite material of the present invention may be used to make interior and exterior decorative house moldings, picture frames, furniture, porch decks, deck railings, window moldings, window components, door components, roofing structures, building siding, and other suitable indoor and outdoor items. In addition, the cellulosic composite material may be used as a substitute for metal, vinyl, and other similar materials in order to make a variety of products.

FIGS. 1 and 2 show an example of a siding unit 10 that can be made with a cellulosic composite of the present invention. In this example, the siding unit 10 is comprised of a siding panel 12. The siding panel 12 is comprised of two courses, i.e., four rows. However, it shall be understood that the siding panel 12 may be comprised of any desired number of rows or courses. In fact, the siding panel 12 may be shake siding or have any other desired shape including, but not limited to, the designs of all other known and future siding panels. It shall also be understood that a backer 14 may be secured to the inside of the siding panel 12. The backer 14 may be comprised of a sufficiently rigid insulating material such as expanded or extruded polystyrene foam, fiberglass, cardboard, a fire retardant grade of polyurethane foam, or any other similar, suitable, or conventional material.

The materials that may be used to make the cellulosic composite of the present invention include, but are not limited to, cellulosic fillers, polymers, inorganic fillers, cross-linking agents, lubricants, process aids, stabilizers, accelerators, inhibitors, enhancers, compatibilizers, blowing agents, foaming agents, thermosetting materials, and other suitable materials. Examples of cellulosic fillers include sawdust, newspapers, alfalfa, wheat pulp, wood chips, wood fibers, wood particles, ground wood, wood flour, wood flakes, wood veneers, wood laminates, paper, cardboard, straw, cotton, rice hulls, coconut shells, peanut shells, bagass, plant fibers, bamboo fiber, palm fiber, kenaf, and other similar materials. Examples of polymers include multilayer films, high density polyethylene (HDPE), low density polyethylene (LDPE), CPE, polypropylene (PP), PVC, chlorinated polyvinyl chloride (CPVC), acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), ethyl-vinyl acetate, other similar copolymers, other similar, suitable, or conventional thermoplastic materials, and formulations that incorporate any of the aforementioned polymers. Examples of inorganic fillers include talc, calcium carbonate, kaolin clay, magnesium oxide, titanium dioxide, silica, mica, barium sulfate, and other similar, suitable, or conventional materials. Examples of cross-linking agents include polyurethanes, such as isocyanates, phenolic resins, unsaturated polyesters, epoxy resins, and other similar, suitable, or conventional materials. Combinations of the aforementioned materials are also examples of cross-linking agents. Examples of lubricants include zinc stearate, calcium stearate, esters, amide wax, paraffin wax, ethylene bis-stearamide, and other similar, suitable, or conventional materials. Examples of stabilizers include tin stabilizers, lead and metal soaps such as barium, cadmium, and zinc, and other similar, suitable, or conventional materials. In addition, examples of process aids include acrylic modifiers and other similar, suitable, or conventional materials.

One embodiment of the present invention is a cellulosic/PVC composite material. The composite material may include at least one cellulosic filler in the amount of about 15% to about 35% by weight, more preferably about 20% to about 30% by weight. The composite may also include a PVC material in the amount of about 65% to about 85% by weight, more preferably about 70% to about 80% by weight.

An example of the cellulosic filler is wood flour. In an exemplary embodiment of the present invention, the wood flour has a mesh size between about 40 and about 60. The wood flour may be selected from any desired type of wood including, but not limited to, oak and pine.

The cellulosic filler(s) may be dried to a desired moisture content. For example, the cellulosic filler(s) may be dried to about 0.5% to about 3% moisture content by weight, more preferably to about 1% to about 2% moisture content by weight. However, it is appreciated that the cellulosic filler(s) may have a moisture content less than about 0.5% by weight or greater than about 3% by weight. In addition, it should be recognized that an in-line compounding and extrusion system may be utilized to eliminate a pre-drying step.

The PVC material can be made by mixing a PVC resin, at least one stabilizer, at least one lubricant, at least one process aid, and optional other ingredients in a mixer. An example of a mixer is a high intensity mixer such as those made by Littleford Day Inc. or Henschel Mixers America Inc. The type of mixer may be selected to blend the ingredients at desired temperatures. After mixing, the ingredients of the PVC material may be cooled to a desired temperature.

The PVC material may include PVC resin in an amount of about 20 to about 70% by weight of the composite material, more preferably about 30 to about 60% by weight of the composite material, still more preferably about 40 to about 50% by weight of the composite material. In an exemplary embodiment, the inherent viscosity of the PVC resin may be between about 0.6 and 1.1 and more preferably between about 0.7 and 0.9. The PVC material may also include CPE in an amount of 0 to about 40% by weight of the composite material, more preferably about 5 to about 30% by weight of the composite material, still more preferably about 10 to about 20% by weight of the composite material. Stabilizer(s) may also be included in an amount of about 0.5 to about 4% by weight of the composite material, more preferably about 1 to about 3% by weight of the composite material. The lubricant(s) may be present in an amount of about 1 to about 8% by weight of the composite material, more preferably about 2.5 to about 5% by weight of the composite material. The process aid(s) may be included in an amount of about 0.5 to about 5% by weight of the composite material, more preferably about 1 to about 3% by weight of the composite material. Also, the PVC material may include an inorganic filler in an amount of 0 to about 15% by weight of the composite material, more preferably about 2 to about 10% by weight of the composite material.

The cellulosic filler(s) and the PVC material may be mixed together prior to being further processed such as by extrusion, injection molding, or compression molding. For example, a low intensity mixer or any other suitable, similar, or conventional mixer may be used to mix the cellulosic filler(s) and the PVC material. An example of a low intensity mixer is a ribbon blender. Alternatively, the cellulosic filler(s) may be combined with the PVC material in a high intensity mixer or any other similar, suitable, or conventional mixer.

The cellulosic composite material may be processed in an extruder, a compression molding apparatus, an injection molding apparatus, or any other suitable, similar, or conventional apparatus. The inventors have surprisingly discovered that the pliability of some embodiments of the cellulosic composite of the present invention enables it to be used to make siding panels in a manner similar to vinyl siding. In other words, some embodiments of the cellulosic composite may be made into siding panels using a typical system for making vinyl siding. For instance, an example of an extruder is a conical, twin screw, counter-rotating extruder with a vent. A force feed hopper or crammer or any other suitable, similar, or conventional apparatus may be used to feed the materials into the extruder. The composite material may be extruded through at least one die. The die system may include a fold-up die to make a substantially flat panel. Optionally, the panel may then be embossed to provide the desired appearance. Thereafter, the panel may be bent into the desired shaped of the siding panel. For instance, the panel may be pulled through at least one sizer or calibrator to form the panel into the desired shape and thickness. Then, after the composite has cooled, a backer may be applied using an adhesive such as, but not limited to, neoprene, reactive polyurethane, or hot melt PSA.

Bending the cellulosic composite after it has passed through the die system is in contrast to conventional cellulosic composite manufacturing systems in which the composite exits a die system in the final shape of the desired component. While the composites of the present invention may be used in conventional cellulosic composite manufacturing systems to make various components, the inventors have surprisingly discovered that the improved pliability of some composites of the present invention also enable these composites to be shaped after leaving a die system. As a result, these composites of the present invention may be used in typical systems for making vinyl siding.

EXAMPLES

Example 1 of a panel was made using a cellulosic composite of the present invention. This example of the cellulosic composite comprised the following ingredients:

Ingredient Approximate Amount by Weight
60 Mesh Wood Flour 25%
PVC resin 31%
CPE resin 31%
Stabilizer(s)  2%
Lubricant(s)  4%
Process Aid(s)  2%
Inorganic Filler  6%

Example 2 of a panel was made using a cellulosic composite of the present invention. This example of the cellulosic composite comprised the following ingredients:

Ingredient Approximate Amount by Weight
60 Mesh Wood Flour 25%
PVC resin 46%
CPE resin 15%
Stabilizer(s)  2%
Lubricant(s)  4%
Process Aid(s)  2%
Inorganic Filler  6%

Example 3 of a panel was made using a cellulosic composite of the present invention. This example of the cellulosic composite comprised the following ingredients:

Ingredient Approximate Amount by Weight
60 Mesh Wood Flour 25%
PVC resin 62%
Stabilizer(s)  2%
Lubricant(s)  4%
Process Aid(s)  2%
Inorganic Filler  6%

Example 4 of a panel was made using a cellulosic composite of the present invention. This example of the cellulosic composite comprised the following ingredients:

Ingredient Approximate Amount by Weight
40 Mesh Wood Flour 25%
PVC resin 31%
CPE resin 31%
Stabilizer(s)  2%
Lubricant(s)  4%
Process Aid(s)  2%
Inorganic Filler  6%

Example 5 of a panel was made using a cellulosic composite of the present invention. This example of the cellulosic composite comprised the following ingredients:

Ingredient Approximate Amount by Weight
40 Mesh Wood Flour 25%
PVC resin 46%
CPE resin 15%
Stabilizer(s)  2%
Lubricant(s)  4%
Process Aid(s)  2%
Inorganic Filler  6%

Example 6 of a panel was made using a cellulosic composite of the present invention. This example of the cellulosic composite comprised the following ingredients:

Ingredient Approximate Amount by Weight
40 Mesh Wood Flour 25%
PVC resin 62%
Stabilizer(s)  2%
Lubricant(s)  4%
Process Aid(s)  2%
Inorganic Filler  6%

Each of the exemplary embodiments of the panel was made using extrusion equipment and techniques as set forth herein. Each of the exemplary panels was between about 50 and about 75 mils thick. The qualities of the resultant products are shown in the following tables. As Tables 1, 2, and 3 indicate, the ingredients of the cellulosic composite may be varied in order to enhance the physical characteristics for exterior siding. Likewise, it should be recognized that the blending temperatures, times, and order of the manufacturing process may be varied without departing from the scope of the present invention.

TABLE 1
(Impact Test Data)
Example IN/LB Thickness (in) VHIT (inlb/mil)
4 24 0.070 0.34
5 16 0.072 0.22
6  8 0.074 0.11

TABLE 2
COE
× 10−5 in/in ° F. AVG
EXAMPLE 1
Sample 1 2.36 2.38
Sample 2 2.40
EXAMPLE 3
Sample 1 1.60 1.65
Sample 2 1.69
EXAMPLE 4
Sample 1 2.22 2.21
Sample 2 2.20
EXAMPLE 5
Sample 1 2.01 1.97
Sample 2 1.93
EXAMPLE 6
Sample 1 1.70 1.70
Sample 2 1.70
HDT
° C. AVG ° F.
EXAMPLE 1
Sample 1 56.3 57.1 135
Sample 2 57.9
EXAMPLE 2
Sample 1 65.8 65.9 151
Sample 2 66.0
EXAMPLE 3
Sample 1 67.8 68.4 155
Sample 2 69.0
EXAMPLE 4
Sample 1 55.6 51.0 124
Sample 2 46.3
EXAMPLE 5
Sample 1 64.8 65.0 149
Sample 2 65.2
EXAMPLE 6
Sample 1 68.1 68.2 155
Sample 2 68.2
VICAT
° C. AVG ° F.
EXAMPLE 1
Sample 1 79.7 79.7 175
Sample 2 79.7
EXAMPLE 2
Sample 1 90.1 89.1 192
Sample 2 88.0
EXAMPLE 3
Sample 1 108.5 109.4 229
Sample 2 110.2
EXAMPLE 4
Sample 1 80.6 80.5 177
Sample 2 80.4
EXAMPLE 5
Sample 1 88.2 88.1 190
Sample 2 87.9
EXAMPLE 6
Sample 1 102.3 106.0 223
Sample 2 109.7

TABLE 3
% strain @
Peak Load Peak Stress Peak Load Modulus
lb. PSI % PSI
Example 1
Sample 1 19.3 2953 4.9 153,196
Sample 2 18.5 2855 4.8 149,914
Sample 3 18.7 2917 4.6 152,958
AVG 18.8 2908 4.8 152,023
Example 2
Sample 1 29.5 6284 2.5 487,936
Sample 2 31.7 6692 2.6 518,560
Sample 3 32.5 6548 2.6 500,536
AVG 31.2 6508 2.6 502,344
Example 4
Sample 1 16.2 2517 4.4 134,840
Sample 2 15.4 2584 4.5 138,697
Sample 3 13.5 2442 4.6 134,836
AVG 15.0 2514 4.5 136,124
Example 5
Sample 1 29.4 5722 2.9 397,082
Sample 2 28.0 5563 3.0 396,446
Sample 3 29.3 5767 3.0 401,989
AVG 28.9 5684 3.0 398,506
Example 6
Sample 1 48.6 9379 2.4 729,622
Sample 2 48.8 9511 2.4 716,083
Sample 3 48.6 9479 2.3 731,295
AVG 48.7 9456 2.4 725,667

Any embodiment of the present invention may include any of the optional or preferred features of the other embodiments of the present invention. The exemplary embodiments herein disclosed are not intended to be exhaustive or to unnecessarily limit the scope of the invention. The exemplary embodiments were chosen and described in order to explain the principles of the present invention so that others skilled in the art may practice the invention. Having shown and described exemplary embodiments of the present invention, those skilled in the art will realize that many variations and modifications may be made to affect the described invention. Many of those variations and modifications will provide the same result and fall within the spirit of the claimed invention. It is the intention, therefore, to limit the invention only as indicated by the scope of the claims.

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Classifications
U.S. Classification428/326, 428/526, 428/511, 428/516, 428/401, 428/332, 428/220
International ClassificationB32B5/16
Cooperative ClassificationC08L23/286, C08L27/06, C08L97/02, C08K5/005, C08K3/0033
European ClassificationC08L27/06
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